OLD WESTBURY, N.Y. -- Karin Simonian was a virtual one-woman wrecking crew for the Long Island Fury as she recorded a natural hat-trick in a 4-0 victory over BuxMont Torch FC in a Women's Premier Soccer League game at New York Tech on Wednesday night.
Simonian raised her goal total to a team-high seven goals for the Fury (5-1-0, 15 points), which provisionally moved into first place in the Tri State Division, pending the result of the match between the New York Athletic Club (4-1-1, 13) and Jersy Blaze (0-5-0, none). BuxMont (15) fell to 5-3-0 and trails Long Island by goal differential.
On Sunday, NYAC blanked the Fury, 4-0, as Long Island suffered its only defeat of the season.
"I think that was just the one bump we had this season," said Simonian, who lives in Westbury, N.Y. "I'm hoping that's it. I'm just hoping the rest of the season. And we learned from that."
Fury coach Paul Riley certainly liked what he saw on Tuesday night.
"We played well tonight," he said. "We played some nice football. played a little of a quicker tempo, which has been a problem in a couple of games. It certainly was during the weekend. The tempo was the key today. We knocked it around a lot better. And you know what? We didn't get a lot of chances, but we finished them. We've had games where we've had twice as many chances and not put more than one away and kept the team in the game. Tonight, I think we were pretty good with our chances. We probably created only six or seven chances, but we put four of them away. They were great goals."
On the other end of the field, goalkeeper Brittany Anghel (East Meadow, N.Y.) was at the top of her game, making several key saves. She produced two big saves in the eight and 12 minutes.
The game might have been different because they have a bit more maturity than we have," Riley said. "They have all college players."
With Long Island holding a 1-0 lead in the 56th minute, Lisa Philbin motored down the right side as Angel came out of the net to cut down the angle and pounced on the ball before her opponent could shoot.
"Brittany has got to come up with two or three big saves," Riley said.
Originally scheduled to kick off at 6 p.m., the match was delayed for 42 minutes as BuxMont's team bus was stuck in traffic due to several snarls in the metropolitan area.
"There are two ways to look at it. One is from our perspective, we've been standing around for a half hour after the warm-up. But we got the first goal, which was the critical part," Riley said. "For them, the negative they didn't have a great warm-up. They were sitting in a car for four hours, five hours. It probably tolled on them a little bit more than on us. They didn't look that sharp when they had the ball. They gave us a lot of possession, which obviously helped us. When you're in that attacking area for most of the day, you're able to create chances."
The chances were more quality than quantity.
Amanda Rooney (Hicksville, N.Y.) scored her second goal of the season to lift the hosts into a 1-0 lead in the 15th minute as she chipped the goalkeeper.
Then it became the Simonian show as she scored all three goals from outside the penalty area. An unmarked Simonian raced down the right flank, forced the keeper to come out of the net before she fired her shot to the lower left far post and a two-goal advantage in the 28th minute.
She was far from finished as she stunned the visitors with a goal only 22 seconds into the second half as she blasted a shot off the left post.
Simonian completed her brilliant performance when she tallied from the right side in the 63rd minute.
"There are going to be times when I mess up or I give the wrong ball or I give the ball away," Simonian said. "But knowing that if you can do something once, anybody can do it again. That motivates me. I can push myself and just keep playing the way Ive been playing."
Added Riley: "Karin had a good game tonight. Karin didn't have a great game over the weekend. We have been relying on her a lot."
Riley said that Merry Speck, who played left back and left wing, "was probably our best player. Karin probably will get most of the accolades for the three goals, rightfully so. Two of them were very, very good. And the third one was clinical. Her goal was to score goals and in the past years she scored she hasn't. She has scored three or four. I'm hoping that she would score 12 or 14 goals. That would propel us into the playoffs at least."
The Fury will have the weekend off before returning to action, hosting the New Jersy Blaze at New York Tech in Old Westbury, N.Y. on Wednesday, June 26 at 6 p.m.
Long Island Fury results
Sunday, June 2 -- LI Fury 3, FC Bucks 1
Wednesday, June 5 -- LI Fury 5, BuxMont FC 0
Sunday, June 9 -- LI Fury 2, FC LVU Lady Sonics 0
Wednesday, June 12 -- LI Fury 2, LVU Lady Sonics 1
Sunday, June 16 – New York Athletic Club 4, LI Fury 0
Wednesday, June 19 -- LI Fury 4, BuxMont Torch FC 0
Long Island Fury schedule
Wednesday, June 26 -- vs. New Jersy Blaze, New York Tech, 6 p.m.
Saturday, June 29 -- at FC Bucks, Council Rock N, 2 p.m.
Sunday, July 7 -- vs. New York Athletic Club, New York Tech, 5 p.m.
Wednesday, July 10 -- New Jersy Blaze, FDU Florham, 7 p.m.